V&A Director Tristram Hunt Defends Fossil Fuel Money

In further news: The Met is hiring its first full-time curator of Native American art; Michael Rakowitz named Nasher Prize laureate

Tristram Hunt, Victoria & Albert Museum, London, 2017. Courtesy: Getty Images; photograph: Jack Taylor

Tristram Hunt, Victoria & Albert Museum, London, 2017. Courtesy: Getty Images; photograph: Jack Taylor

The director of London’s Victoria & Albert Museum, Tristram Hunt has defended museums’ relationships with fossil fuel funding. At the Art Business Conference in London, Hunt pointed out that his museum’s own funding had suffered cuts of 28% over the past decade. Hunt acknowledged that ‘the pre-history of fossil fuel companies in muddying the science about climate change, in lobbying, in their political acts, have been pretty criminal and they will be judged on that,’ as reported by The Art Newspaper. ‘But, I also think they will be part of the solution to dealing with climate change and they are engaged with it.’ Hunt went on to say that he didn’t see a problem with having ‘relationships with those organizations, like for example BP who are thinking very carefully about a zero-carbon future.’

The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York is hiring its first full-time curator of Native American art. The move is part of its Native arts programme, contained within the museum’s American wing. The curator will oversee the Met’s collection of indigenous American artefacts, including the Charles and Valerie Diker Collection – one of the most important holdings of Native American artworks. The head of the museum’s American wing, Sylvia Yount, told Artnet: ‘With the arrival of a new curator, we anticipate an increasingly robust programme of Indigenous American art across the museum’.

In further news: Michael Rakowitz has been named the recipient of the 2020 Nasher Prize, which comes with an USD$100,000 award; Pace Gallery now represents Nina Katchadourian; Magalí Arriola has been appointed director of the Museo Tamayo in Mexico City; and Beatrice Leanza has joined the Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology in Lisbon as executive director.

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